BLTC Press Titles


available for Kindle at Amazon.com


Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Lewis Carroll


The Art of Worldly Wisdom

Baltasar Gracian


Further Adventures of an Irish R. M.

Edith Somerville and Martin Ross


The Diplomatic Background of the War

Charles Seymour


A Serious Call to a Devout and Holy Life

by William Law

Excerpt:

For instance, the cafe of a common swearer who dies in that guilt, seems to have no title to the divine mercy, for this reason, because he can no more plead any weakness, or infirmity in his excuse, than the man that hid his talent in the earth, could plead his want of strength to keep it out of the earth.

But now, if this be right reasoning in the case of a common swearer, that his sin is not to bereckon'd a pardonable frailty, because he has no weakness to plead in its excuse, why then do we not carry this way of reasoning to its true extent? Why don't we as much condemn every other error of life, that has no more weakness to plead in its excuse than common

swearing?

For

For if this be so bad a thing, because it might be avoided, if we did but sincerely intend it, must not then all other erroneous Ways of life be very guilty, if we live in them, not through weakness and inability, but because we never sincerely intended to avoid them?

For instance, you perhaps have made no progress in the most important christian virtues, you have scarce gone half way in humility and charity; now if your failure in these duties is purely owing to your want of intention of performing them in any true degree, have you not then as little to plead for your self, and are you not as much without all excuse as the common swearer?

Why therefore, don't you press these things home upon your conscience? Why do you not think it as dangerous for you to live in such defects as are in your power to amend, as 'tis dangerous for a common swearer to live in the breach of that duty, which it is in his power to observe? Is not negligence, and a want of a sincere intention, as blameable in one cafe, as in another?

You, it may be, arc as far from Christian <Perfeclion, as the common swearer is from keeping the third commandment; are you not therefore as much condemn'd by the doctrines of the Gospel, as the swearer is by the third Commandment?

You perhaps will fay, that all People fall short of the Perfection of the Gospel, and

theretherefore you are content with your failings. But this is faying nothing to the purpose. For the question is not whether Gospel Perfection can be fully attain'd, but whether you come as near it as a sincere intention, and careful diligence can carry you. Whether you are not in a much lower state than you might be, if you sincerely intended, and carefully labour'd to advance your self in all Christian virtues.

If you are as forward in the Christian Life, as your best endeavours can make you, then you may justly hope that your imperfeSions will not be laid to your charge; but if your defects in piety, humility, and charity, are owing to your negligence, and want of fincere Intention to be as eminent as you can in these virtues, then you leave your self as much without excuse, as he that lives in the sin of swearing, through the want of asincere intention to depart from it.

The falvation of our souls is set forth in Scripture as a thing of difficulty, that requires all our diligence, that is to be work'd out with

fear and trembling.

We are told, that Jlrait is the gate, and narrow is the way that leadeth unto life, and


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